Deezer tries to outdo Spotify with upgraded Apple Watch app

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Deezer Apple Watch
Deezer hopes to offer the best wrist-based music experience yet.
Photo: Deezer

Following on from Spotify’s Apple Watch debut, rival streaming music company Deezer has given its Apple Watch app a major version 2.0 overhaul.

The upgrade includes brand new features such as direct access to recently played tracks, favorites, and Deezer’s “Flow” personal music discovery system.

The “Recently Played” feature grants quick access from the app’s “My Music” section to all tracks recently listened to on any device signed in to Deezer. “Favorite Tracks,” meanwhile, allows you to listen to saved songs found within the ‘heart’ icon directly from the home page. Finally, Deezer Flow promises a “never-ending personal soundtrack,” using AI to help you discover new music.

Compared to the feature-thin Spotify Apple Watch app, it’s an impressive update which Deezer no doubt hopes will score it a few extra subscribers. The service offers around 53 million tracks in total, alongside playlists, more than 23,000 podcasts — and some unique Deezer Original content you can’t find elsewhere.

“Personally, I don’t like wasting time trying to find music that I want to listen to,” Deezer’s Chief Content and Product Officer Alexander Holland said in a statement. “Now with the new Deezer app on Apple Watch, I can quickly play Flow and all my favorite songs directly from the homepage, right from the wrist.”

Clash of the music streamers

Compared to the big two streaming services — Apple Music and Spotify — Deezer is something of a bit player. According to a recent report, around 80 percent of U.S. music streaming takes place on either Apple’s or Spotify’s platform.

While we don’t have totally up-to-date numbers, in May Apple announced that Apple Music has passed the 50 million active user mark. Spotify, by comparison, had around 83 million subscribers by the end of June.

Deezer, like Napster and Tidal, is very much a marginal player in the industry. According to the company, it currently has around 14 million monthly active users.